Joy as Zimbabwe Warriors receive friendly match invitation from European country


In an exciting development for Zimbabwean football, the national team, popularly known as the Warriors, has been invited to play a friendly match in Malta. The invitation was extended to the Zimbabwe Football Association (Zifa) by the Malta Football Association, with the proposed match scheduled to take place in March during the upcoming FIFA international break.

If all goes according to plan, the Warriors will travel to Malta between March 18 and 26 to face the southern European country in a friendly encounter. The match comes as a welcome opportunity for the national team to gain valuable experience and prepare for their Group C 2026 FIFA World Cup qualifiers campaign.

Zifa’s normalisation committee chairman, Lincoln Mutasa, confirmed the invitation, but stated that the association is yet to make a final decision regarding the trip. “We still have to confirm, but we are working towards that,” Mutasa said, keeping the details under wraps for now.

Meanwhile, Zifa is facing the task of appointing the next interim coach for the Warriors, following the expiration of Portuguese coach Baltemar Brito’s contract on December 31. Among the potential candidates, Dynamos coach Genesis Mangombe stands out as a strong contender to take over the role. Mangombe previously served as one of Brito’s assistants, alongside Bongani Mafu, during the team’s recent matches against Rwanda and Nigeria, both of which ended in draws.

It is worth noting that due to the lack of a stadium in Zimbabwe that meets international standards, the Warriors hosted their match against Nigeria in Rwanda. The team currently sits in fifth position in Group C with two points, while Rwanda leads the group with four points after drawing against Zimbabwe and securing a 2-0 victory against South Africa’s Bafana Bafana. Bafana Bafana occupies the second spot following a home win against Benin, while Nigeria sits in third place after two draws against Zimbabwe and Lesotho. Lesotho, with two draws against Benin and South Africa, holds the fourth position, while Benin anchors the group standings with a draw and a defeat.

After the friendly match in Malta, the Warriors will resume their World Cup qualifiers campaign by hosting Lesotho on June 3. This crucial match will play a vital role in determining Zimbabwe’s chances of advancing further in the qualifiers. The Warriors will then face a challenging away fixture against Bafana Bafana in June, as they strive to secure their spot in the prestigious tournament.

Football enthusiasts across Zimbabwe eagerly await the decision of Zifa regarding the friendly match in Malta and the appointment of the next interim coach. The nation hopes that these developments will contribute to the Warriors’ success and propel Zimbabwean football to new heights.

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